Recent improvements in US- Cuban relations is sure to promote more than tourism and trade. It’s also allowed Raul Castro, the current leader of Cuba, to take part in a recent car show in Dade City Florida which is usually off-limits to most Cubans. Due to President Obama’s recent loosening of the embargo and travel restrictions with Cuba, Raul Castro was issued a travel permit to attend an event in Dade City Florida. He entered one of his daily driver’s, a 1946 Ford Coupe, into the Dade City Cruise-in classic car show.
The “Dade City Cruise In” is a monthly car show that features American classic cars and is the Holly Grail when it comes to classic car shows in the states. Castro stated “One of the worst things about USA’s past policies regarding Cuba has been his inability to order replacement car parts from Miami and automotive tools from WiseAutoTools.com. Another God awful thing caused by USA’s past policies was not being able to attend the Dade City Cruise-in.” The leader of Cuba, almost smiling, like captured in the image above, said he was finally able to have the worn ball joints replaced in his 46 Ford. He was happy to make the trip to one of the most coveted events in classic car folklore… the Dade City Cruise-in. And to top it off, he WON.
On the street right after Castro won the event, we were able to get one of the other contestants take on this recent change in US policies.
Trevor Smith, who lives on Meridian Ave in Dade City had this to say. “I don’t think it’s fair. Cuba has nothing but old cars on their streets. Castro shouldn’t be allowed to pick the very best one they got and enter it in our American car show. It just ain’t fair.”
Stanley Winemaker which was runner up, with his 1957 Chevy, also had strong feelings about what had transpired. ” I cannot frickin believe it. Not that Castro was allowed to come here… he loves old cars and cigars, so he can’t be all bad. But what I can’t wrap my head around is that he won with a Ford.”